Bishops visit Syrian refugees

Bishops from across Europe and North America will be visiting refugees from the Syrian conflict this week.

The delegation is travelling to Jordan where they will meet the refugees as part of the 13th meeting of the coordination of Episcopal Conferences in support of the church of the Holy Land.

The five-day meeting gets underway on Saturday and will also take in a visit to Bethlehem before concluding with the annual pastoral visit to Jerusalem.

Delegates will be updated about the current situation in the Holy Land from Patriarch Fouad Twal, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, and from the Apostolic Nuncio, Mgr Giuseppe Lazzarotto.

The meetings will be joined by representatives of Christian organisations working with refugees, prisoners, Philippine workers and other vulnerable people.

The visit ends on 10 January in Jerusalem with a celebration of Mass at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

The delegation includes Bishop Declan Lang and Bishop William Kenney from the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales.

The group's mandate from the Holy See is to offer support to the Christian Churches and communities of the Holy Land.